I’ve been thinking about this one for quite a while. When I wrote Learning Environments by Design (2015), we were really just beginning to grapple with how to structure (or not structure) learning strategies in the wake of ideas about curation and ubiquitous availability of the internet. Since then, many others have published ideas about how to support learning and development without necessarily structuring courses – and I think these ideas are all terrific in the right context.
There is no one best way to frame up effective learning strategy. So savvy professionals need to familiarize themselves with a wide range of possible structures and approaches and figure out the best application for each project and context. Skill in this task begins with a working understanding of the variety of ideas from which you can borrow to address your specific need. To that end, I’ve compiled a curated list of links that can be used to familiarize yourself with the options.
I began by noticing that the strategies being suggested operate at many different levels and with different levels of complexity in how they blend modalities and approaches. Some are at the strategic enterprise level, focusing on performance support or broad infrastructure and strategy approaches. Others are more focused, describing emerging strategies for complex blends. There are also certainly times when a specific focused technique (like training) is the right answer (although even these likely have a bit of a blend). And a few thinkers have been focused on enabling self-directed learning, especially when support resources are strained. I describe these categories below, and more deeply on my curated resources page for Learning and Development Strategy Frameworks.
I hope you find this analysis useful in considering what may be appropriate in your context for your projects – I know I have found it helpful in my own consulting. Let me know what you think – and what to add to the list!